Blue is curious why Black chose to send Dina home. Amanda is honest and admits that it was about the friendships she had. Liz, during her interview, is angry and says that they should just wait until they really have to make a tough decision because as hard as they say this week was, they didn't think twice about it.
Not only is this week the halfway point of the competition, but it's also dubbed "face-off week." This means that during the weigh-in, one Black team member will go head-to-head against a Blue team member. Whoever has the higher percentage of the two people gets a point, and the team with the most points wins the weigh-in. In order to decide who gets the advantage of determining the match-ups, the teams participate in a "pop challenge." Watching the task makes me nauseous as each player has to hit a button, cross underneath a stick and hit another button, over and over until they need to be subbed out or reach 500 total. Black reaches 100 first, but Allen quickly gets his team a lead that Black is never able to make up. Rebecca anchors the challenge for her team and beats Black by just a few punches.
After deliberating, Blue decides to make the following match-ups:
Rebecca vs. Amanda
Tracey vs Abby (I love when Abby says, "Tracey's um, well, she's crazy.")
Allen vs. Danny
Rudy vs. Shay
Liz vs. Danny
While Blue is swimming away in the pool, Amanda cries to Jillian on the treadmill. "Why are you so attached to being the failure?" Jillian asks her. Amanda admits she's not ready to push so hard, with the cameras in her face, and Jill yelling. I thought this was a very raw and honest moment, because not often do we see a player admit to the pressure of trying to lose weight on television. When Amanda eventually walks out, Jillian mutters to herself, "Why are these contestants so friggin' difficult this season?"
This week's challenge had a nice surprise, a very fitting one given Sunday night's baseball game. Derek Jeter was on hand - OK, on the Jumbotron - to explain the task and urge the Black team on to their first challenge win. With tons of baseballs everywhere, each team must eliminate a member of the opposite team by putting a total of 316 (Jeter's batting average) balls in the box in front of the other players' life-size blowup of their former self. Finally, Black gets a win and their prize is a yummy meal cooked by the yummy chef Curtis Stone, as well as a 2-pound advantage at the weigh-in.
Jillian has some more heart-to-hearts with her girls. She asks Abby if she's found her purpose yet and what it's like to lose everything you love. It breaks my heart every time they play the video of her talking about the accident. Amanda, meanwhile, talks to Jillian about walking out of the gym earlier. She says she's afraid to fail, but Jillian tells her that it's a learning process. And when it came time to work with Shay, Jillian asks bluntly, "So what does the child of a heroin user do?" Once Shay breaks down (does Jillian have this effect on everyone?), Jillian tells her it was not her fault that she couldn't save her mom.
At the weigh-in, Black announces that Amanda will receive the 2-pound advantage. She steps on the scale first and only loses 4 pounds, 2.75 percent with the advantage. Rebecca, her opponent and former teammate, loses 9 to give the Blue team the first point. A disappointed Abby loses just 3 pounds; Tracey annoyingly beats her with 5. Danny luckily pulls a 12 for the Black team and beats Allen's 8. Daniel, who gained a pound last week, loses 5, which is shocking to everyone. He was hoping for double digits. Liz goes up against him and wins the point with 7 pounds lost. So Blue wins the weigh-in. Continuing on with the rest of the players, Shay loses 9, meaning that Danny will have immunity for his Black team. Ali then reminds everyone that if Rudy can achieve his 100-pound weight loss total this week, he'll set a new record. Conveniently, the current record-holder Dane is on hand. The producers obviously knew that Rudy would break the record, which he does when he loses 14 pounds. Dane also reports that he and a bunch of other former contestants are competing in a triathlon the next day. Wow!
Meanwhile, Liz is a feisty little granny and says in her confession that she's happy that the Abby/Shay/Daniel/Amanda alliance has to send one of their own home.
Back in the house, Abby tearfully tells her team that she can fight at home just like she's done since the tragic accident that claimed her husband and kids. "No!" is all I have to say. I wish Abby wasn't so selfless because I want her to stick around.
During the elimination, Abby votes for Amanda as a throw-away vote (since nobody else will). Amanda votes Abby out - as does Daniel. Both say they are respecting her wish. It's too bad she has to leave just short of making it under 200 pounds. She receives a huge, warm and wonderful welcome when she returns home. "I'm back and so glad you're all here with me," she announces to her loved ones. During the "where are they now," we see that Abby is doing public speaking. She tells her audience that "even in your darkest hour, there's hope." She's lost a total of 80 pounds and is a true inspiration.